Automation equipment firm YTS will be the exclusively supplier of degassing equipment to Ultium Cells, the joint venture between LG Energy Solution and General Motors, TheElec has learned.
The newly developed degassing equipment has the cell positioned vertically instead of horizontally when degassing.
This prevents electrolyte from leaking during the process.
YTS won the orders for all the degassing equipment Ultium Cells plans to put in its first factory at Lordstown, Ohio.
The new degassing equipment has already been applied to LG’s factory at Ochang.
The South Korean battery maker has previously procured degassing equipment from Daejin Machinery and GPI.
As Ultium Cells is planning to apply the same equipment it will be using for the first factory for its second factory in Spring Hill. This means YTS will likely be the exclusive supplier of degassing equipment for the second factory as well.
The new degassing equipment is also smaller than conventional counterparts. It is around mid- to late-20 meters long, instead of around 45 meters.
Degassing kits are used in the formation process, which takes up around 70% of a battery manufacturing factory. The smaller equipment means Ultium Cells can use the remaining space more efficiently.
The order is a boon to YTS as it has been planning to reduce its reliance on display equipment.
It recorded 99.4 billion won in sales in 2017, this was halved to 44.8 billion won in 2020, due to falling demand from the display industry.